AFL England Looks to the Future
Wednesday, July 18 2012 @ 08:44 am ACST
Contributed by: Adam Bennett - AFL England President
Voted through at the 2011 National Conference, AFL Great Britain officially changed its registered title to AFL England. Originally brought into being as the British Australian Rules Football League (BARFL) and then updated to AFL GB in 2006 to bring it more into line with the AFL, the organisation has renamed to clarify its remit in the British Isles.
The Welsh and Scottish competitions have been fully independent for several years, though there is cooperation between the bodies in several areas. Discussions will follow between the 3 national organisations and AFL Europe on the future of the GB Bulldogs, the representative team who have historically represented all 3 at full-sided international competition (European Championships and International Cup). Individual national squads normally take part in the smaller sided home nations internationals and annual Euro Cup, where the England Dragonslayers were 2008 and 2009 victors.
“With the change of name, AFL England needs to focus on our objectives for the next 5 years”, said Adam Bennett, President of AFL England. “It’s important to learn from the example of other nations and start looking outside our traditional comfort zone of senior men’s footy, to start building those activities which will support and develop the growth of the sport for the future.”
“The 2012 Brit Cup hosted a women’s exhibition match prior to the tournament Grand Final and it’s great to see the work of Tobietta Rhyman rewarded with a growing number of women taking an interest in the sport. We’re encouraging and supporting the work with juniors being done by a number of our members, as well as taking steps to track the development and success of these activities.”